September 22, 2007

The Fellowship of the Church

1 John 1:1-4

We proclaim ... what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us...  1 John 1:3


A young boy was told by his father to cut down weeds near the highway. Two businessmen were surveying a site across the road. The men were unsure how to get back to town, so they asked the boy for help. Twice the boy gave them bad directions. The men, frustrated and angry, came back to confront the boy. They said he was the one who was lost. But the boy replied, "I'm not lost. I'm right where my father told me to be."

Disciples of Jesus aren't lost when they are right where God has told them to be. And God the Father has told us to enjoy fellowship with him and Jesus and with the community of believers. We are never really lost when we are connected in fellowship with God and with other Christians. We become lost when we think we can go it alone in this world.

Eugene Peterson, author of The Message, gives an excellent description of the fellowship community of God. He says that the church community is "a grouping of persons whom God has called together, whom God will keep together, and who will survive by God's grace." Whenever we gather as God's people, we proclaim to the world "what we have seen and heard" so that others may experience the joy of fellowship we have with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

We need to be right where our Father wants us.

<p>Lord of the church, keep our fellowship with you fresh and our fellowship with each other open, honest, and hospitable. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.</p>

About the author — Reginald Smith

Dr. Reginald Smith is senior pastor at Roosevelt Park Community Christian Reformed Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he has served for seventeen years. He has also served as a pastor in Paterson, New Jersey. He and his wife, Sharon, have three daughters, Janelle, Katrina, and Mariah.

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